Expat Living: The Introduction

Chinese Lantern

This article was originally posted on WomenLearnThai.com.

  • Get your FREE Thailand Cheat Sheet ​by entering your email below. The ​Sheet, based on ​our experience with living and working in ​Thailand for 10+ years, shows you how to ​save time and money and ​gives you the tools the thrive in Thailand.

A bit of history…

I was raised in the expat life. With foreign travel in my blood, I naturally took to the lifestyle.

So far I’ve lived on the Island of Borneo (9 years), France (2 years), Japan (2+ years), New Zealand (3+ years), Scotland (1 year), Thailand (followed the tsunami in), as well as eight states across the United States (from 3 months to 7 years). Oh, and there’s the flat in Devon, England. My home away from home.

As what often happens with children raised on the move, I engaged in a lifelong search for a place to hang a permanent hat. I believe my wandering gives proof.

Alaska, Japan and New Zealand had two inside moves each. France just the one. But living in Texas found me in Quitman, Tyler and Houston. In Houston I moved boxes around at nine addresses. Tyler four. Quitman two. California? I lost count. And in one year alone, I lived in Virginia, New Mexico and Colorado. With a year jaunt to Scotland and back, Borneo held to three intra-country moves in nine years. Combined, that’s a lot of packing tape.

I’m more of a country than city gal, so when Bangkok waggled an interest, it took awhile to answer. Since my arrival from the quiet Island of Borneo, there have been three tries at settling in. Lad Prao, and a double dose of Ari. And truthfully, I believe I have it sussed.


I now consider Thailand home. And if all goes well, it’ll be my last home.

So basically what you can expect from this section will be insights into expat living. From an expat who should know better about most things (hah!).

And as I love the Thais and Thailand, what you won’t get is a lot of whinging and whining and quibbling.

But I do intend on querying. A lot.

8 thoughts on “Expat Living: The Introduction”

  1. Som, I believe I browsed a copy at Paragon in BKK. If this is the book then he’s not too sure about the phrases himself.

    A bit strange, the writeup on amazon.com is from a guy who has never read the book.

    But as I am now curious, I’ll pick one up if I come across it again.

    Knowing my Thai teacher, she will not be pleased 😉

  2. Hi Michelle, welcome to WLT! I’m lazy in my own way too 😀

    Learning Thai is a loooooooooooong process and as I’m here for the duration (that’s the plan), I decided to give it a try. But honestly, I’m slooooooooooooooow but I guess as I’m also stubborn, I’ll stick it out.

  3. Hey, thanks for the post on my blog – nice website! Keep meaning to learn Thai but too lazy to get past the basics, which is incredibly stupid seeing as how I plan on living here the rest of my life. Kudos to you for learning! 🙂

  4. For us it was like Fairbanks–shaking, fear, no devastation in our immediate vicinity. Unlike you, no family tragedy although we knew people who were swept off in Valdez. An experience indeed.

  5. Agreed, curious! And after all these years, I finally meet someone else who’d been involved in the quake.

    I was in Fairbanks at the time, taking swimming lessons in the indoor pool. The viewing bleachers were suspended from the ceiling, so when the earthquake hit, they started swaying from side to side.

    My father’s only sibling had flown up from CA for a rare visit. She left Fairbanks and landed in Anchorage right before the quake. Long story, but she was one of those who didn’t make it. She was in her early 30’s with four young children. Very sad for the whole family.

    Fairbanks didn’t have the destruction of Anchorage so we took in families who’d lost their homes. All in all, it was an experience.

    The quake hit central Alaska and Anchor Point is to the West, correct? Was your area affected?


Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.